Ronan Boyce claims Derry City face ‘six cup finals’ as season draws to a close

Defender Ronan Boyce says he’s delighted Derry City’s European fate now rests firmly in their own hands.

Thursday, 21st October 2021, 7:21 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st October 2021, 7:24 pm
Derry City's Ronan Boyce.

The 20-year-old said the Candy Stripes’ dressing room is only too aware after last weekend’s results that should they win what he describes as ‘six cup finals’, then European football for the 2022 campaign will be secured. However he was also quick to point out that all six of their remaining games will be very tough, starting with Drogheda United at Head in the Game Park on Sunday (2pm).

“Even Bohs drawing with Shamrock Rovers on Monday went for us but, to be honest, we aren’t looking at other results, we are concentrating totally on ourselves,” explained Boyce.

“It’s in our hands now. I know that Sligo are a point ahead of us but we still have to play them as well so we know ourselves it’s down to us if we want to get Europe, it’s as simple as that.

“We aren’t looking at any other results, it’s down to us now and that’s a good thing. Ultimately that’s what you want. We aren’t relying on anybody and it’s up to us if we get Europe or not.

“All you can ask is for things to be in your own hands and that’s the case now. After the start we had no one would have given us a chance to be in the position we now find ourselves. The turn around has been quite remarkable and it would be nice now to finish in Europe.

“Look, our remaining six games are ‘cup finals’ for us, so hopefully we can just keep pushing on.”

The Republic of Ireland U21 international knows only too well that with ‘The Drogs’ just four points ahead of Waterford, who currently sit in the relegation play-off spot, the home side will also desperately want the points.

“After they beat Bohemians at home recently they were probably thinking let’s push on for Europe but a few weeks later they are looking over their shoulder, that’s how quickly things can change. It’s crazy how things can change in this league, you can take nothing for granted,” he added.

“One week you are looking for a European place and the next thing you are looking over your shoulder at the teams below you. It’s just the way the league has gone this year. The league is so tight, it’s crazy.”

The Ramelton native says he’s expecting another tough test on Sunday afternoon especially if their previous visits to Head in the Game Park this season is anything to go by.

“It’s always a tough game against them, especially at their ground. Earlier in the season we won 2-1 and it was a very tough game and we are expecting another tough one on Sunday afternoon,” he confirmed.

“They’ll have their fans in and hopefully we’ll have some away fans but, yeah, it’s a massive game. As I said, playing Drogheda any time is tough, especially coming to these crunch games now, but we are looking forward to it, even though we know it’s going to be hard.

“The cup tie also down there, on their tight pitch, was madness and it will be no different this time. On a Sunday afternoon, I’m expecting them to have a good crowd and hopefully we’ll get a few Derry fans making the trip.

“They’ll be well up for it. Drogheda are a good hungry team and, like us, they’re a young side, but we’ll be up for the game. We know we’ll have to be if we want to get anything from the game.”

Meanwhile tickets for the Bohemians game at the Ryan McBride Brandywell Stadium on October 29th, go on general sale at 9am tomorrow (Friday) morning.